Recently, I made a seemingly off-topic post–”Would You Still Trust These People If You Knew These Secrets?” It hasn’t gotten a lot of attention yet for a number of reasons–off-topic for this blog, etc.
While the content was off-topic, the process for creating that content was very, very on-topic. Imagine that this blog was about consumer rights. Then, the post becomes very relevant in terms of its content–a comprehensive list of posts in the universe that reveals all the secrets of the people we entrust with our money and secrets.
And here comes the good part: You can use the same process that I used to create that list to create viral content for your blog on demand.
The content for the “Would You Still Trust These People” post was discovered in less than one second. That’s no boast, less than one second–using the power of Google. How did I do that? I used some creative search operators, a rudimentary knowledge of copywriting and the power and comprehensiveness of Google.
Here’s how I did it:
Step One – Use the right search operators
The * (asterisk) is your friend. In Google, it represents the replacement of a word or phrase. So, for example, if you entered “Popular * Ideas” in the Google search box, it will return the results “popular costume ideas”, “popular gift ideas”, etc. See here.
The ” ” (quotes) are also your friend. You probably know that placing a phrase in quotes means that a search will only return results with that phrase in that order. Thus, “popular * ideas” means that results will only have the word “popular” before the word “ideas”.
Understand how to refine your results with the “intitle:”, “inurl:” and “site” Google commands. The “intitle:” command is useful if you are obtaining many results and want to focus your results to those with the search phrase in the title. “Inurl:” is useful to focus results with the phrase in the url. Finally, “site:” allows you to focus your results to certain types of authoritative sites like .edu and .gov.
Step Two – Combine search operators with focused copywriting
If you don’t know much about direct response copywriting, head over to Copyblogger for some background. I also recommend you read the book by John Caples/Fred Hahn, “Tested Advertising Methods“.
Think about how copywriters in your niche would promote their content. What sorts of titles would they write? The beauty of copywriting is that the title are usually templates. For example, see how the following two titles, while dealing with two totally different topics, follow very much the same template:
Ten things your doctor won’t tell you.
Twenty things your mover won’t tell you.
Take that template and put the phrase in quotes. Then, using the asterisk, replace the words that are different with an asterisk. Add another asterisk for your niche and do a search.
For example, for this blog, I might formulate the following search query: “* things * about * blogging”. The results are here which I can use as a launch pad for creating blog posts. Mix and match the results to create viral content that’s unique.
If you find that you are getting too much “noise”, try using the “intitle:” operator, like this: intitle:”*things * about * blogging“.
Want to focus your results to government or educational sites? Add the site:.edu or site:.gov operators to your query and see what else comes up.
Using the two steps, I was able to quickly compile a list of useful links for a consumer-oriented blog (e.g. consumerist.com) for the “Would You Still Trust These People” post using this Google query: intitle:”* things your * won’t tell you“. In less than one second, I had a list of results that I used to make my post.